In the same way you might change your bedsheets or repot a plant, your routine might need a shakeup too.

It’s been almost a year since so many of our lives have changed due to COVID-19. When we entered the pandemic, routines and habits changed immediately. We had to recalibrate our everyday life and adjust to a new way of living.

And while those changes may have helped at first, it’s important to take a moment and reflect on your own relationship with your routine—especially if you’ve felt stuck or are experiencing the effects of a “pandemic wall.”

Here are a few small changes you can make to shake up the various routines you have in your day-to-day, especially as you navigate this overwhelming time.

Your Routines With Yourself…

Reflect on your past routines: Before you dive into new ways to revamp your time alone, try asking yourself the following question: What do the routines I have with myself look like today—and do they help me move forward in my goals or self-care practice? This reflection can help explore how your self-care routines have worked for you in the past—and what you can change to improve them based on the present moment.

Try a new breathwork routine: Your relationship with yourself is one of the most important relationships you have. Breathwork is a great practice to help you be still and connect deeper with yourself.

Give yourself permission to try something new: So often, we get stuck in a rut because we don’t allow ourselves to be beginners. Try picking up something new—and give yourself permission to be bad at it, too. Whether it’s something small (like drinking your coffee in a new spot in your home) or something big (it’s never too late to try making sourdough bread!), take pride and savor the joy that can come from a new experience.

With Others…

Reflect on what you value: Relationships have been through the wringer over the past year, but there are small ways you can revamp your routines with others while also adhering to social distancing rules. Before you do so, ask yourself: What about my relationships with others do I value the most? This reflection question can help you understand what to prioritize in new routines.

Communicate in new ways: Whether you’ve been staying connected with others via FaceTimes, Zoom calls, emails, or texting—you’re not alone if those modes of communication have become overwhelming. Instead, try sending a playlist back and forth or communicating via photos for a week. It can be a fun way to express yourself and feel connected to those you love differently.

Find common ground: Connecting with others over a book, a movie, a meditation, a fitness routine, or more can be a great way to share experiences with your community in a new way. Find something that you both want to share with each other and reconnect about your experiences afterward.

With Work…

Give yourself permission to rest: It’s easy—and human—to associate your worth with how productive you are, but actively incorporating rest into your routine is one way you can upgrade your work routine. It can be hard to do initially, so try starting small by giving yourself five minutes to get grounded in the middle of the day if you can.

Find new ways to connect with your teams: If you feel comfortable, opening up conversations with your co-workers to topics outside of your work is one way you can feel connected. Whether it’s scheduling a virtual coffee session with a teammate, going on a socially-distant walk with another, or sending something that brought you joy—prioritizing new things to connect with can help you feel refreshed in your work environment.

With Kids…

Create small social moments: A lot of children are experiencing new levels of stress, anxiety, and loneliness due to social isolation. One way to combat that is to incorporate new social moments, as suggested by The Washington Post. Whether it’s through hosting a virtual Zoom lunchroom with their classmates or sharing a TikTok or creating a quick, daily podcast with them, try using technology to support a routine that includes community and social interaction.

Help them develop a self-care routine: You’re never too young to learn about the value of prioritizing self-care. Whether it’s journaling or meditating, finding ways to bring kids into a portion of your routine or helping them develop their own can be a bonding experience and introduce a new way to talk about how to cope with emotions.


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